1998 Dodge Stratus Lower control arms

Tiny
UNKNOWNFISH
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 DODGE STRATUS
  • 88,000 MILES
I want to change my lower control arms on my 1998 Dodge Stratus ES with the 2.5l v6 and would like to know exactly what size wrenches and sockets to remove and replace the parts and approximately how long it should take since this is my only vehicle and I won't be able to leave once I get started, Thanks for any help.
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Tuesday, October 29th, 2013 AT 5:54 PM

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Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
I've replaced a few of these but I never paid attention to nut and bolt sizes. I just grab sockets to try until I find the one that fits. Even after being the suspension and alignment specialist at a very nice Chrysler dealership for ten years all through the '90s, I don't remember the sizes. Typically you will find the pinch bolt for the ball joint stud to be a 15 mm, and the nut will be a 17 or 18 mm. You'll want a socket for the bolt head and a box wrench for the nut. The rear pivot bolt will need a socket. That is likely to be a 17, 18, or 21 mm. I suspect those tools will be what's needed for the front pivot bolt.

The most important thing to remember, to increase the life of the bushings, is to not tighten the front pivot bolt until the car is sitting on the ground at normal ride height. If you tighten it while the car is supported on jack stands and the control arm is hanging down, you'll clamp that bushing in a permanent twist when you lower the car. Don't forget to have the car aligned right after the control arm is replaced.

For an experienced mechanic, this job would typically take about a half hour plus the alignment, assuming no bolts are rusty or rounded off. If you're doing this without a hoist or air tools, two hours would be a safe guess.
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Tuesday, October 29th, 2013 AT 9:34 PM
Tiny
UNKNOWNFISH
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Thanks, that's the info I was looking for!
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Wednesday, October 30th, 2013 AT 1:41 AM

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